Thursday, January 20, 2011

Testing New Paint Formulas

Like most artists, I love trying out new art supplies. So when Sennelier (a French manufacturer of fine artists supplies) asked me a while back if I would be interested in testing some of their new formulas for watercolor paints for them, I quickly said 'yes' and waited eagerly for the samples to arrive. When the box arrived, I was a bit surprised - I was expecting a few tubes of paint - maybe a dozen, at the most. But the box contained 53 tubes! I began to hyperventilate a little as I thought about how I could possibly find the time to test and accurately review all these colors - and return my results before the one-month deadline.

But once I got started I calmed down quite a bit. The 53 tubes are various formulas for 12 different colors, so there are only about 4 or 5 variations for each of them.

Overall, every one of the samples is nice, and some of them are downright extraordinary. The variants between the different formulas are surprising, and it took me quite a while to conduct comparisons and write a review for each formula. For instance, the five samples of Ultramarine Blue vary in temperature from cool red tones to warm yellow tones, and all of the color samples have huge differences between them for opacity, absorbency, flow, texture, granulation, intensity, and color shifts. All these variations make it very hard to choose individual favorites from among the samples, and all of them provided outstanding results when used.

I love the exceptional quality of these paints, and I’ll be using a lot more Sennelier artist supplies from now on!

posted by Annie Strack @ 1:15 PM   0 Comments

Friday, January 14, 2011

Battle of New Orleans

While I was up in the frozen north shoveling snow, Brian flew back to New Orleans for the Park's grand re-opening ceremony at the Chalmette battlefield. The ceremony was held last weekend, in conjunction with the anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans.

The is the new visitor center at the battlefield. The old one was destroyed in Katrina, and the storm did major damage to the National Cemetary and it's historic walls and buildings, as well as the Beauregard plantation house, outbuildings, and the Monument. Rebuilding and restoration was one of Brian's top priorities during the last 5 years, and it was nice that he got to go back and cut the ribbon at the re-opening.
Unfortunatly I didn't get to go with him on this trip; someone had to stay behind to shovel snow around here!

posted by Annie Strack @ 3:57 PM   0 Comments

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow Day!

Pictures of the new snow this morning! I think we got about 8 or 10 inches of snow last night. Brian's car has 4wd, so he was able to get out and go to work this morning. I'm not so fortunate, and I think my truck might have to stay in the garage until spring!
I pulled on my shrimp boots and hiked down to the end of my driveway to get this view of the valley.

The sun was just barely starting to rise over the hills, casting a warm glow on the trees.
My backyard, looking out towards the woods.
The view from the front of my house.

posted by Annie Strack @ 8:53 AM   0 Comments

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